ANC support stable – survey

2010-07-28 10:35

The ANC remains the party of choice for voters, but a closer

relationship between the Independent Democrats (ID), Democratic Alliance (DA)

and Congress of the People (Cope) would be good for the country’s political

health, according to the results of an Ipsos Markinor survey released


The poll, conducted among 3 386 people in May, showed that if an

election were held tomorrow, the ANC would gain a two-thirds majority, but Cope

and the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) would not do as well.

“The poll shows the continued one-party dominance by the ANC as

they attract a two-thirds majority, this despite a five percent drop off of

support from December 2009,” the statement read.

They interpreted the results to also confirm the need for

opposition co-operation ahead of the 2011 local elections as smaller opposition

parties like Cope and the IFP continue to lose support.

The ID and the United Democratic Movement were still attracting

less than 1% of the vote, according to the survey.

The question posed was which party the person surveyed would vote

for if national elections were held “tomorrow”.

Although the ANC still came out tops, with the thumbs up from 66%

of those surveyed, this was a drop from the 71% of the vote they would have

received if an election had been held at the end of last year.

They received just short of 66% at last year’s election.

Support for the official opposition, the DA, remained around the

12% to 13% mark, after winning 16.6% in the 2009 election.

Their core support between elections seems to hover at around 13%,

and appeared stable.

The troubled Cope, formed by a group of disgruntled ANC veterans

who broke away in a “divorce”, won 7.42% of the April 2009 vote but since then

support among those surveyed has dropped to 3.6% as the party slugs it out in

court over leadership disagreements.

The IFP attracted around 1.8% of the vote in the May survey, after

winning 4.5% of the vote in last year’s election.

The company noted that the results of by-elections posted on the

Independent Electoral Commission’s website on July 22, confirm the ANC’s

electoral dominance as the party won 19 of 26 wards contested across the


The DA won four wards and consolidated its strong position in the

Western Cape and the IFP won three wards.

The analysts said that of the parties which currently attract more

than 3% of eligible voters, the DA seemed to attract a more racially diverse

support group.

However, the party needed to bolster its youth support ahead of

next year’s local elections, as it tended to appeal to older voters and youths

were known not to pay much attention to local elections.

This was unlike the ANC which had support across the age


DA supporters were still 51.4% white, with coloured South Africans

making up almost one-third (31.5%) and black South Africans a tenth (9.9%),

according to the survey.

Supporters of the ANC and Cope are overwhelmingly black.

Cope has a small percentage of white and coloured support – around

10% each.

“The ANC continues to monopolise voter sentiment while the DA

consolidates its position as the most effective opposition party in the current

political scenario,” Ipsos Markinor commented, saying the proposed co-operation

between the DA and ID, and possibly other opposition parties, was good news for

the health of opposition politics in South Africa.

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